In a world dominated with pink and violet, quite similar to Nik's spiritual world, a blonde boy in a comfortable silkworm onesie stammered in surprise as his outburst pulled the attention of the silently crouched pink-furred Manticore named Kitty and an arm-length, thin serpent named Hissy. "What is that?!" The spiritual form of the Skydream Ice Worm blurted as he saw three spirits emerging from Nik, the cold-hearted murderer who didn't even wait to let the poor worm finish his introductions before stabbing a cone of death that literally tore him asunder. If it wasn't for his quick wits and instantly forming an extremely one-sided contract with Ray, effectively becoming Ray's 'possession,' then he would have died.
But now, the three spirits started absorbing his million-year-old spirit ring at a high pace. This, of course, made the spirit worm float around in glee only to find that instead of exploding from the extreme bloating of spiritual energy, Nik stood with an impassive expression. "This shouldn't be... even a Titled Douluo couldn't absorb my spirit ring even when I co-operated... how could this... how could this smelly man get the ring!!!"
Since Ray couldn't connect to his spiritual world, many things, despite his knowledge of the spirits were unknown. While Nik assumed that Ray's spirits were sentient, it wasn't the case at all. Ray simply encountered a few timely fortunes in the manner of gaining important information.
"Meow~" The manticore learned a few things from Sunny and mewled in confusion as Hissy hissed towards his counterpart as if directing something important.
"It's not like that, you guys! Sigh! I am not jealous of him... well... he has a rugged charm! But no! I like to look clean and cute!" Skydream shouted in indignation.
Within a world with a starry ceiling and the land dominated by violet and crimson, Nik stood n.a.k.e.d in between the divided the land once again. The black dragon totem over his spiritual avatar now covered his entire abdomen. Still, with greater priorities, Nik focused on the glimmering ice-blue egg as a thick stream of golden energy invaded the spiritual world from the giant opening in the sky. With his three martial spirits committed to absorbing the spirit energy, Nik needed to pick the task of refining the egg with the spiritual energy. The theory was quite simple. Since the spirits needed compatible spirit rings to unlock their true forms before truly absorbing spirit rings to augment their abilities, Sky wanted to replicate the need of the spirit rings using the una.d.u.l.terated spiritual energy the three spirits would refine from the potent spirit ring. Since the martial spirit was still incubating, there was a distinct possibility that the unawakened martial spirit could passively absorb the spiritual energy and be born in its true form itself.
Of course, all these were conjectures but Sky being the top master of two concepts already gave substantial gravity to her words. Such actions based on intuitions are what made the experts of Sky's and Kaal's level so terrifying. With their phenomenal battle strength and terrifying instincts, every rank 9 expert dominated galaxies under their belt. Now, such an expert with her terrifying instincts took action personally after a long time, allowing Nik to realize how lucrative the benefits to this egg would be. Not failing his focus, credits to [Multi-task,] Nik continued to refine the egg using the method described by Sky. It was ingenious and simple. As the spiraling spiritual energy drilled into the sky blue egg, the shell glowed with a tinge of gold as the passive absorption of the egg kicked in, as Sky hypothesized. With a single part of his consciousness now retreated to enjoy the wonders of his spiritual world and also observe the soul but as large as a tree thrumming and pulsating occasionally, Nik's entire task soon grew monotonous.
The absorption continued for another two hours in between which Gojira returned and stood near Klas to understand the situation, which she replied reluctantly. Gojira now seriously questioned her choice of getting addicted to hugging Klas while sleeping. Meanwhile, Moon, still intimidated by Gojira buried into Klas's embrace as it showed surprising vigor for a beast supposed to be lazy during the daytime.
"Huff~" Nik exhaled deeply as his spirits retreated into his body while the last dregs of spiritual energy got absorbed by the spiritual egg that now trembled continuously as if on verge of awakening. By now, everyone understood that the birth of the spirit egg as its true spirit is already a fact. The thought of being able to absorb a spirit ring to augment his spirit instead of unlocking their true form truly titillated Nik to no ends. He could officially become a spiritual master.
'Ah, but I have already shown two spirits... welp, not that I am showing off to anybody...' Nik smiled and looked back, looking at the distressed Ray who eyed Nik and mouthed in annoyance.
After mouthing this, his words came through the chat.
[Gods! I never knew a spirit could speak so much. Take him from me. Please!]
Nik smiled and shook his head, [Just use him and block his connection. What else can he do to you? If he grows for the better, reward him with candy or something... anyway, let's begin hunting for my spirit before continuing with yours.]
Nodding helplessly, Ray found his comfort in Sunny. The succubus now truly understood why a pet was extremely important in one's life. Meanwhile, Ray also severed his connection with the sassy spirit and stopped Yar from attacking it. Since the familiars are a strange hybrid between physical and spiritual lifeforms, they could possibly confront martial spirits without any support. Of course, Ray didn't wish for internal strife within his own body, so, Ray accepted the next best task and made Yar took Ray's shape and a huge donger in between and 'force' Skydream into submission.
"Did I call you at a bad time?" Nik inquired as he caught Moon, who weakly jumped from Klas's embrace and would have definitely fallen down if not for Nik catching her. Annoyed with the antics of Moon, Gojira huffed softly, "No, not really." She leaned up on her toes to peck Nik's lips. This was one of the best things about Nik. Gojira's previous 'snack' was shorter than her but Nik... Gojira still recalled the hunk's figure draping her as he drove his c.o.c.k into her without any care with the roughest of thrusts she had ever experienced... and this was just Friday night. "Well, you already know about the sudden... interruption. Want to join us in our hunt?"
Nik inquired with a smile as Gojira thought for a while before shaking her head. "Stalking little hundred-year-old beasts isn't hunting... I'll leave you guys to cover your baby steps... of course, call me if we are going to attack a hundred-thousand-year-old beast or... the million one... of course, it should be stronger."
Stating her requirements, Gojira waved before jumping and disappearing into the forest. She did seem slightly busy despite her denial so Nik didn't try and hold her back. Maybe one of her fans was in a crisis.
"Well... why is your luck better when it comes to women?" Ray complained. Tucking Moon into his tunic, Nik shrugged as even Moon was pulled up by the shrug of his shoulders, "If you try to aim for women... who knows, you might be better."
"Nah~!" Ray grinned as he pointed forward, "Let's go! We have a lot to do today!"
With their speed, it took around seven minutes for the trio to reach the intended destination. The Star Dou Forest is divided into extremely small patches controlled by various species. The one where Nik and the group camped is populated by Sun Kittens, the area the group traveled into is populated by one of the known menaces that even the Rank 4 spirit masters would try to avoid Crowned Alligators. Their target, of course, was the weakest of the single jeweled crowned alligator denoting its status as a hundred-year-old spirit beast.
[These alligators have extremely dull senses but terrifying intuition. Their crown serves as a connector with their pack.]
Nik sent his words to Ray and Klas as he eyed the blue-scaled alligators resting by the shade of the tree with a glimmering sapphire crown on their heads and a varying number of jewels on the tip of the fist-sized crowns. This species of spirit beast is even claimed to have its own hundred-thousand-year-old lord so Nik proceeded with caution.
[Both of our scents are too much to simply lure out a single alligator. Moon's scent is too weak. Klas isn't equipped with the methods of crowd control. So, without risking any involvement of the rumored lord, we will try to use that 'Siren's Call.' It should do the trick for most of the future hunts, too.]
Ray nodded. Taking out the beautiful golden flute with an exotic pattern etched over its surface, Ray softly blew as an enchanting tune emerged from the flute. The melodious tune seemed too 'inviting' and resounding that before Ray could even activate its ability, most of the single-jeweled alligators had already started swaying their thick, meaty tails while opening their crimson lidded eyes in confusion.
Out of the group, a remarkably tiny alligator joyfully ran towards the group. There wasn't a single jewel on its head that made Nik realize that it might be in the ten-year-old category. So, the moment the alligator entered the patch where the trio was hidden, Nik let Klas shoot a dangerous emerald spike from her chest that stabbed the beast in the head. After all, Nik still hadn't recovered his energy from the previous attack.
A rather dull white spirit ring formed over the corpse of the beast as Nik stored its corpse. This would be part of their meal today. Meanwhile, allowing Sky to move out of his spiritual world, the bat instantly sucked away the spirit ring and flapped around Nik to show her appreciation before entering his spiritual world.
"I am next!!"
Asmodeus jumped around in Nik's spiritual world as Lilith snorted. The infernal blade continued to look at the glimmering gold egg with a few icy blue cracks over its surface still moving. The spiritual pressure leaking from the cracks itself made the remaining trio understand that the spirit won't be something half-baked as the trio but a full-fledged spiritual entity with its own 'existence,' something the trio were striving for. Seeing the egg, Lilith truly wished to be an egg, too. After all, her base is already set and she could only absorb the compatible spirit rings before advancing to her true form before being able to exist in the real world instead of their projections.